Business Irish

Sunday 18 February 2018

Don't lose economy's competitive edge, US Chamber warns

Peter Flanagan

IRELAND is regaining its competitiveness but the economy must ensure that it retains its competitive edge once growth returns, according to the head of a leading trade group.

The president of the American Chamber of Commerce, Lionel Alexander, said that although Ireland was becoming competitive again, it was vital that we remained so in the future.

"A lot of the competitiveness that Ireland lost during the boom has come back in the realms of transport, energy and labour.

"The weak euro has also been very positive for the recovery.

"However, Ireland must not lose those fundamentals that were forgotten during the boom," he said.

Mr Alexander also said that there were more than 1,250 vacancies with American companies in Ireland, according to a survey carried out by the chamber.

More than 70pc of the companies that responded to the survey said they would be recruiting this year with 68pc saying they were recruiting right now. The majority of jobs on offer are in engineering, research and development, production, finance, and office administration.

Mr Alexander was speaking at a lunch organised by the chamber as part of the US Independence Day celebrations this weekend.

The lunch was attended by, among others, the US ambassador to Ireland, Dan Rooney.

Irish Independent

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